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Wednesday, December 11, 2013

5 Reasons Why We Love Our Staycation At Shangri-La Hotel

Sponsored Review

We’ve just had one of the best staycations we’ve gone for as a family, and we almost didn’t want to come home. You can hardly blame us – It’s Shangri-La we are talking about. The hotel’s got a wonderful heritage of 40 years, and has been hailed as one of the best hotels in the world. There are many reasons why our staycation was so wonderful, and I’m only going to share 5 reasons in this post – You can discover the rest yourself by checking into the hotel too.

1. Beautiful Furnishings & Interior Decor

We were in awe when we stepped into the hotel lobby – Apart from its usual classy interiors, the hotel was all decked in Christmas splendor! I love how Christmassy the whole place looked, and there was even live piano recitals coming from the lounge. I think it felt really ‘magical’ at that moment. The tall Christmas tree that stood right in the middle of the lobby was such a beautiful centerpiece!

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During the Christmas season, you will also find a festive store at the lobby in the form of a gingerbread house, selling teddies, and all kinds of Christmas goodies & yummies! This gingerbread house is constructed using 9,625 real gingerbread tiles. The log cakes, cookies, gingerbread man and all kinds of sweet delicacies looked just awesome! Buying your Christmas products from a gingerbread house just adds on to the mood, don’t you think? Furthermore, in the true spirit of Christmas, proceeds from the sale of Shangri-La teddy bears and “Touched By An Angel” chocolates will support the Make-A-Wish Foundation® (Singapore) and Bayanihan for the Philippines, a fundraising campaign Shangri-La Hotels and Resorts has launched.

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Love the wreaths hanging along the staircase – Totally sets the joyous mood. :)

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And the pianist who played lovely carol tunes – I was really mesmerized by him (until the husband pulled me away).

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There was a Christmas tree at every corner of the hotel – nope, not complaining. Christmas trees just make us very happy for some reason. If I have a big house, I would also put one Christmas tree at every corner. :D

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Now if you looked close enough, you’ll spot huge teddies all dressed up like one of the bellman of the hotel. He was SOOO cuddly!

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2. Top-Notch Guest Service

We were booked to stay at The Garden Wing, and this wing has its own dedicated check-in counter. When I enquired at the main check-in counter, one of the staff immediately escorted us to the correct counter located at the other end of the lobby. There, we were greeted by two of the loveliest ladies with great smiles and settled our check-in quickly and efficiently. While one lady entertained my kids, the other confirmed our meal arrangement, bedding requirement etc. Then, we were escorted up to our hotel rooms and the lady only left after ensuring that we are all happy with the rooms. I was very impressed with the great service!

Prior to our arrival at the hotel, I was asked to fill in my requirements for the room – Type of pillows I prefer, interior decorations  & flowers preferred (Yes, I could choose whether I wanted sweet designs involving roses or the exotic ones involving herbs & ginger) and the type of newspapers I want to receive the next morning, etc. That’s really putting the guests’ interest as their priority! Indeed, when I walked into the room, I noticed that the painting on the wall was that of a ginger. And they subsequently delivered a floral arrangement that looked very abstract and exotic. =P

Seeing that I have 2 young kids with me, they also sent over kid-sized bathrobes & bathroom slippers – So cute!

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And to the kids’ delight, they also sent over the hotel’s mascot squirrel soft toy along with some titbits. Kids are treated like royalties here! :)

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While I usually had to call housekeeping to request for more towels and bottled water, the staff knocked on our door that evening with a trolley full of supplies, asking if I needed more toiletries, water, towels or anything in general. That’s a great gesture, methinks!

3. Spacious & Cosy Rooms

My first impression of the Garden Wing was how quiet and peaceful it was. It felt like  sanctuary away from all the hustle of city life. I felt like I could really rejuvenate and relax in this place. I guess that’s the good thing about their location – They are near enough to Orchard Road (which was why we walked to Tanglin Mall for our snowing experience), they are not that near such that it gets too noisy. I think it’s perfect.

When we walked into our rooms, we were very pleased that they were spacious with a big sitting area, balcony, dining table, writing table and of course the very big bed. Shangri-La Hotel very kindly arranged for two connecting rooms for us, and I brought my mother-in-law with us. Joey and her took the room with two super-single beds, while Jayne slept with hubby and I in our king-sized bed. Love it too that there was a huge bath tub and a separate standing shower area, and check this out – Double sinks! That’s an epitome of luxury, I tell ya.

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4. Yummy Food With Amazing Spread

All guests staying at The Garden Wing are entitled to a cocktail spread everyday between 5pm to 7pm. During this time, guests can enjoy unlimited beverages and food at the Lounge. The spread’s really good, and the beverages include red & white wines, cocktails and also coffee/tea. It was so luxurious!

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It was truly a nice experience relaxing at the lounge with the lovely food & drinks with my family. What a nice touch of the hotel to include this for the guests of The Garden Wing! :)

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The next morning, breakfast was served at the legendary The Line restaurant. I’ve heard so much about how good their buffet is, but I’ve never had a chance to try. I was therefore really looking forward to having breakfast there and I was not disappointed! It was the biggest breakfast buffet spread I’ve ever seen. The variety and quality of food was amazing! There is a section for all kinds of bread and pastry, egg station, noodles & porridge section, cooked food section offering fried rice, nasi lemak etc, American breakfast section offering baked beans, hashbrowns, waffles, pancakes, bacon etc, vegetarian section offering roti prata, Japanese section offering sushi and poached eggs, yoghurt section with all kinds of fresh fruits, seeds and vegetables etc. I think you get the point.

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5. The Hot Tub Pool

Yes, that was an absolute delight, I say! The girls wanted so much to swim in the morning, but they were also afraid of the cold water in the pool. The hot tub pool was perfect, and reminded me of the hot springs I visited at Taiwan. :)

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There were lifeguards on duty at the swimming pool, and they also engaged the kids and entertained them. My girls were busy picking up fallen frangipani from the ground and putting them into their hair. I wasn’t feeling too well, so I was just relaxing on the lounge chairs by the side of the pool watching the kids have fun. Really quite a good life. :)

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Thank you Shangri-La for giving us such a wonderful staycation. We thoroughly enjoyed ourselves and can’t wait to be back again soon! :)

P/S: The J Babies was provided with one night’s stay at two connecting rooms at The Garden Wing for purpose of review. All photographs and opinions are my own. No other monetary compensation was received.

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